Weight class: Middleweight/165 lbs
Hometown: Flint, Michigan
Resides in: Colorado Springs (Olympic Training Center)
Birthdate: March 17, 1995
Coach: Leon Lawson
Club: Bedrock Boxing
Began boxing: At age 11 after hearing from my father about his love of boxing and how Muhammad Ali’s daughter, Laili Ali boxed. I wanted him to be proud of me.
Favorite TV show: Real Husbands of Hollywood
Favorite Movie: 7 Pounds
Favorite combination: Double jab, uppercut, hook, right hand
Favorite post weigh in meal: Spaghetti and meat balls
Did you know:
* Claressa is the first in her family to graduate from high school and it was important to her to set an example for those following behind her to set a good example
* She is the first American female to win Olympic gold in boxing and can become the first American boxer, male or female, to win gold medals in back-to-back Olympic Games
* She only has one loss in her entire career which came in the World Championships prior to the Olympic Games
* She can sing and loves Serena Williams
2016 ELITE FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
OLYMPIC TRIALS CHAMPION
2015 PAN AMERICAN GAMES CHAMPION
2015 USA BOXING NATIONAL CHAMPION
2014 AIBA FEMALE BOXER OF THE YEAR
2014 WORLD CHAMPION
2014 USA BOXING NATIONAL CHAMPION
2013 AIBA YOUTH FEMALE BOXER OF THE YEAR
2013 YOUTH WORLD CHAMPION
2013 USA BOXING YOUTH NATIONAL CHAMPION
2012 OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALIST
2012 WOMEN’S CONTINENTAL CHAMPION
2012 U.S. OLYMPIC TEAM TRIALS CHAMPION AND OUTSTANDING BOXER
2011 NATIONAL PAL CHAMPION
2011 JUNIOR OLYMPIC NATIONAL CHAMPION
Claressa Shields enjoyed an eventful summer prior to starting her senior year in high school. The Flint Northwestern High School senior made history simply advancing to the London Games, the first-ever in the sport of women’s boxing. The event was a culmination of years of work for she and her lifetime trainer, Jason Crutchfield, but just earning a berth at the Olympic Games wasn’t enough for this teenager. She wanted nothing but gold and with three strong wins in London, she accomplished her goal.
Shields took up boxing as an 11-year-old after hearing her father talk about Laila Ali. She initially thought he wanted her to box but quickly learned after asking for his permission that he wasn’t exactly keen on the idea. He eventually came around after a family vote with Shields’ stepmother, and she’s been a force to reckon with ever since.
A proud Flint native, Shields wanted badly to bring something positive to her hometown, which hasn’t had much to celebrate recently. She understands the importance of being a role model to the young people in her community and has been overwhelmed by the unbelievable outpouring of support she has received since returning from London with her gold medal.
Since he history making performance, she has been honored on the floor of the Michigan State Senate, introduced Vice President Joe Biden, and presented the Liberty medal to boxing icon Muhammad Ali. She attempts to fulfill every autograph and picture request but is still adjusting to everything that comes with her success.
She became the first in her family to graduate from high school and plans to enroll in online college classes to pursue her academic goals and competitive aspirations simultaneously.
After being forced to compete in the youth division a year after winning Olympic gold, Shields added a youth world championship and AIBA youth female boxer of the year award to her resume in 2013.
She was finally old enough to return to the elite level in 2014 and her dominance continued in the older age division. She once again racked up domestic and international titles, culminating at the 2014 Elite Women’s World Championships. Shields entered the event hoping to avenge the only loss of her career, which she suffered at the 2012 World Championships to England’s Savannah Marshall.
Shields started the event with a bang, winning her first bout of the tournament in only 11 seconds. Although Marshall lost before she could reach the American teenager, Shields dominated all of her opponents en route to not only middleweight gold but also the Outstanding Boxer of the Tournament award.
She added another piece of history in 2015, becoming the first American boxer to win a gold medal in women’s boxing at the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto, Canada. She is currently preparing for her second Olympic Trials and living and training full time at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Her improbable run to historic Olympic gold has been immortalized in a documentary film that is currently showing across the country and will air on PBS in 2016. The film T-Rex screened at South by Southwest in Austin in the spring of 2015 and she and the filmmakers enjoy the chance to inspire audiences all over the United States with every screening and the story of her chasing her dream despite the odds.
One of the most entertaining female athletes in the world, Shields and her aggressive, power-punching style, is must watch entertainment every time she steps in to the ring. Shields can become the first American boxer, male or female, to win two Olympic gold medals with a second Olympic title win in Rio de Janeiro.
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